To speak of a full return to normal is certainly premature. However, theIAA Mobility 2021 which is taking place a Munich (will take place from 7 to 12 September) is the first European car show that has been held in attendance for two years now. A “spring of late summer” that seems, ideally, to give new life to a sector, the automotive one, crushed by the commercial aftermath of the pandemic – which caused car sales to collapse – struggling with the microchip crisis, which is severely holding back world production, and with one expensive transition to electric technology, of which, however, it is not reaping the benefits: the battery car market, in fact, is still extremely marginal and, at the moment, it does not justify the investments made by the manufacturers. Just think that the “electric cars” are worth just 8.5% of the market and which, according to Auto Schmidt research estimates, will represent the 10% of the European registration only by 2025 and, for Aci, 20% of the Italian market not before 2030.
Yet, the Munich event seems to be able to mitigate, at least for a few days, the problems and performance anxieties mentioned above, allowing the various brands to present their new four-wheelers. It must be said that, net of the Covid tsunami, the formula of traditional salons was getting a bit old, overtaken by less celebratory but more interactive and attractive layouts for the general public, like our own MiMo, organized mainly outdoors. The latter factor became indispensable with the pandemic and the new needs for social distancing. The IAA promotes a hybrid formula in this sense, made up of traditional exhibition pavilions and installations that are open or also located in other areas of the city. But let’s get to the news on four wheels …
The appetizer, or the Smart Concept #1, had already been served last night: that is, a prototype of Urban-sized electric SUV built in collaboration with Geely, the Chinese giant which is also the largest shareholder of Daimler (and, therefore, of Mercedes itself). 4.29 meters long, retires practically all the assets of the Smart brand, made up of extra small, city dribbling dimensions. Inside, then, there is a infotainment based on 12.8 “screen, also this maxi format. Technical details, arrival times and, above all, prices to be defined.
MercedesInstead, he removes the lid from the rest of the courses he has prepared for the Munich Motor Show: a range of novelties for all tastes, united by electric propulsion technology. It starts from EQE, a reduced-scale version of the EQS flagship, from which he takes full advantage of the technical and stylistic approach. 4.95 meters long, it is built on the same Eva2 platform, specially made for electron mechanics. The four-wheel steering system, which improves agility or stability depending on the driving situation.
On board you can have theHyperscreen, which turns the entire dashboard into a huge screen dedicated to instrumentation and connected infotelematics. Half ready for debut next year, the car will initially be powered by a rear electric motor with 292 HP of power and 530 Nm of torque. Next, the four-wheel drive variants, with a second powertrain installed at the front. The battery has a capacity of 90kWh and, through fast columns, it can go from 10 to 80% of the recharge in half an hour (and recover 250 km of autonomy in a quarter of an hour). While the Wltp homologated autonomy amounts to 660 km.
More performance the Mercedes-AMG EQS 53 4Matic+, first model of the manufacturer branded by the sports department of the Star. Unleashes a power of 658 CV e I 950 Nm of maximum torque, which rise respectively to 761 CV and 1.020 Nm choosing the optional package “Dynamic Plus AMG“. Everything is powered by a 107.8 kWh at 400 Volt battery, integrated into the floor. The EQS 53 can sprint from 0 to 100 km / h in 3.8 seconds, while the Dynamic Plus takes 3.4 seconds: for the two versions the maximum speed is limited to 220 and 250 km / h, with autonomy between 526 and 580. The weight, 2,655 kg in running order, is masked by the low center of gravity and four-wheel steering.
The most fascinating? Certainly the EQG, which anticipates thebattery-powered edition of the timeless G-Class, the Mercedes off-road vehicle initially conceived in the late 1970s as a military vehicle and, over time, became a cult for the international jet set. The design evolves the traditional stylistic features of the model in an electric key – for example, the front grille is closed to improve aerodynamics, while that of the thermal versions is perforated to bring fresh air to the radiator – and there is no lack of flashes that underline the electric nature of the vehicle: on the rear hood the classic spare wheel has been replaced by a quadrangular container in the shape of a wallbox, useful for housing the charging cable. The off-road skills, however, are not discussed: the traditional confirms this frame with side members and crossbars (with integrated batteries) and the specific suspension scheme, modified to accommodate up to four electric motors (one per wheel) and make the EQG unstoppable.
Less specialized (and definitely more affordable) the EQB, battery variant of the GLB SUV. It shares its technical base with the GLA, but compared to the latter it stands out for a more squared style and for the possibility of accommodate up to 7 passengers. He will debut in two variations, both with 66.5 kWh battery and dual motor, one per axle, in order to have four-wheel drive. The entry-level has 228 hp of power and a torque of 390 Nm. The homologated autonomy is 419 km. The more hefty version delivers 292 HP, 520 Nm torque and the same range.
At the top of the offer and the news of the German manufacturer is the Mercedes-Maybach EQS, concept of a luxury SUV with 600 km of autonomy, scheduled for 2023. It is also the first Maybach – the most exclusive brand of Mercedes – electron-powered and visually distinguished by its two-tone paint, the multitude of chrome-plating that adorn the bodywork and the 24 “alloy wheels. While the passenger compartment is a triumph of the finest materials available in the automotive field. The car is built on the basis of the EVA platform and inside resumes the setting of the EQS.
In home Renault the novelty is called Megane E-Tech, 100% electric crossover arriving in dealerships in February 2022. It rests on 20 ”wheels and offers sophisticated details such as the door handles flush with the body. The external dimensions are quite compact: the car is 421 cm long and offers a generous 2.7 meter wheelbase, guaranteeing generous interior space (440 liters of useful trunk volume): thanks to the intrinsic compactness of electrical mechanics. It is built on a new platform, thea CMF-EV, equipped with lithium batteries developed by LG and housed under the vehicle floor.
It should be emphasized that the passenger compartment is made of mainly recycled materials and, at the end of its life, 95% of the car will be recyclable. Inside, the screen of the 12.3 “connected infotelematic system and digital instrumentation. As many as 26 driver assistance systems, which include automatic speed control at roundabouts and the device that corrects the trajectory in the event of a potential collision with other vehicles. Two engines are available, with 130 HP and 250 Nm of torque and 218 HP and 300 Nm. Two sizes for the battery, 40 or 69 kWh, with homologated autonomy between 300 and 470 km.
In addition to the news Audi and Cupra, already seen in recent days, the group Volkswagen also premieres the ID. Life, concept per an electric city car that will arrive in 2025 and will cost around 20,000 euros. It will be built – together with its sister brands Seat and Skoda – at the Spanish factory in Martorell. Also in this case the setting is that of a crossover with minimal shapes and with optical groups camouflaged in the bodywork. It will take advantage of the Meb platform with front-wheel drive. The ID. Life, in particular, it is powered by a 234 HP electric motor, powered by a 57 kWh battery, good for about 400 km of Wltp range. For Hyundai, on the other hand, the presence at the IAA coincides with a series of strategic announcements: the Korean manufacturer, in fact, is committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2045, focusing on three pillars: clean mobility, new generation platforms and green energy . Starting from 2035, then, Hyundai will stop selling vehicles with internal combustion engines in Europe.
The BMW i Vision Circular Concept? A sort of spaceship in the name of sustainability: it is built with 100% recyclable materials. The vehicles of the BMW group are produced using on average almost 30% of recycled and reused material: the goal is to quickly increase this percentage to 50%. The prototype foreshadows a compact electric car for 2040, about four meters long, essential in shape but equipped with a spacious cabin, designed to accommodate four passengers.